Friday, November 7, 2008

Understanding Girls With AD/HD

Understanding Girls With AD/HD, by Kathleen Nadeau is a very easy to read book about how girls with ADHD may differ from boys with ADHD. Although slightly repetitive at times, it was quick to read and easy to understand.

The author seeks to define 2 main categories that girls with ADHD can be classified into: those with hyperactive tendencies, and those with inattentive tendencies. She notes that girls are often left undiagnosed because their symptoms are different from those that boys exhibit. She also brings to light the tendency that adults have to be more accepting of a boy with hyperactive behavior than a girl with similar behavior.

Some of the behaviors we're more likely to recognize are found in the tomboy or the social butterfly. Less often recognized is the shy inattentive girl that often fades into the background. This girl often experiences anxiety and may be able to hyper-focus on school work or other things more than the tomboy or social butterfly.

I admit that I had a difficult time accepting the validity of this book simply because I identified closely with many of the symptoms listed, and I don't consider myself to have ADHD! I read the book to try to gain some understanding about my daughter, and found myself thinking more about my own experiences. If I process the information without the label of ADHD, I find myself much more able to gain insight!

Much of the discussion in the book relates to how school affects a girl with ADHD, and how girls of different ages might behave. The author's main suggestions to help a girl with ADHD were to provide a loving, understanding, stable home. These things, she said, would do more than anything else to help the child have self-confidence and learn how to function in a healthy manner.

This was an interesting book, well documented and easy to understand. It provided me with food for thought, not only about my daughter, but about myself.

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